The Throne
It is what many elder persons advise to a couple preparing for their wedding in Bogor. Even though the couple are just ordinary people and not coming from famous family , the advice will still be the same. The couple will be a "few hours King and Queen".

What is said by the elder persons is not a hyperbole or expectation or dream. It is a tradition from Sundanese culture that bound most of people in the city. The tradition that has been inherited from a past Pakuan Pajajaran Kingdom (14th Century) that had a capital in Bogor area. The tradition has still applied by Bogor people until now. Yes, of course it has been affected and influenced by several other cultures but the core of that is still the legacy from the city's ancestor.

Being a "King or Queen" actually describes  perfectly the role the couple must do during the wedding procession, especially in the 2nd session of the couple wedding. The 1st session is about the wedding vows (which I may write on my future post) and the 2nd is about the reception or the party. The happy couple must play this role during the reception.

Ki Lengser
The reception is usually started by the arrival of the newly married bride and groom contingent into the ballroom. The contingent are usually formed by the couple , their families and relatives dressed in Sundanese traditional clothes. The contingent can not immediately enter into the ward and must stop in front of the door. They must wait for a permission to enter.

The permission comes in a form of "Ki Lengser" approaching them (in a theatrical act) accompanied by several dancers. He greets the contingent and then walk in front of the contingent to show them places for the entourage. During this time , all must walk slowly following the "Ki Lengser" and are escorted by the dancers on their left and right side. The contingent are directed to the place , the Throne .

The bride and groom will then sit on the centre seats side by side, the King and Queen seats. On their left and right side seats, the parents from both side are their companion during the reception.

Once the King and Queen seated, "Ki Lengser and the leader of the dancers retreat . Before their disappearance from the stage , in front of the throne , they do a homage act to the King and Queen to tell them that their duty to welcome the couple has been completed and the stage will be the couple's.
the homage

Usually there are several other rituals done during this. However it's common doing in Bogor to save time (as usually they have limited time) to allow guests and attendance to come to congratulate the couple.

The King and Queen
During this time , the play is still on going and the couple must keep playing their acts. It's not like a western couple , the newly married ones are expected to stay and not to move. As a King and Queen , they will only stay when the guests (act as their folk) approach and give their felicitation. The couple are expected to keep smiling all the time when they accept the guests. They must do this until the last guests or the time is up.

Even if they feel hungry or thirsty, they are not expected to leave the throne. Some persons have been given a duty to put attention of the people on the throne needs.

the folks felicitae the brde and groom
The guests will queue to the throne and depending on the numbers of the invited , the line can be quite long. Usually the time for this ceremony or wedding takes around 3-4 hours and the couple as the King and Queen must meet all during this period. The guests may feel disrespected or unhappy if they can not meet the bride and groom. Therefore the bride and groom are expected to stay at their seats.

The wedding ceremony / party can be considered as a play replicating the hierarchy of the past kingdom of Bogor. There are 'actors/actress' who role as the King and Queen , the queen-mothers/fathers , the Prince and Prinecess , and the folks. The tradition requires all involved people to take a part on the stage.

This is what is the meaning of being "few hours King and Queen" advised by elder persons to a young couple going to marry. It is about the role they must play in a wedding using Sundanese tradition and ritual.

Note : 
- these pictures were not taken by my Xperia Camera M and these were not taken by myself. However I own the pictures . These were not taken recently , in fact the portraits were taken almost 14 years ago....:-D :-D 

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About Anton Ardyanto

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